Letter from Ron Arad to his Family
In 1987, a year after Ron was taken hostage by the Amal terrorist group, his family received the following picture and letter from him.
Today is Sunday (I think for us it's Rosh Hashanah), September 27, 1987. Let me first tell you how much I long to see all of you (so much time has passed -- I think it's been about a year -- right?). I do dream about you at times, but I try not to think too much during the day to avoid getting too demoralized. In general, I'm in good health, and feeling all right. They treat me well. My hand is slowly getting better, but it will be totally better when I return to my normal routine. (G-d and the leaders willing). Every day, I spend hours praying for this [to return home], and hope that you do too. I know it's difficult, but please try to do everything you can for me.
I don't know how, but please send a message to the powers that be, to our leaders, to the government, to anyone who is able to do something to get me out of here. Please do your best, because Lebanon is no place to be, and I really want to see you all -- for one shouldn't have to be held in captivity when there are other alternatives. With hope and good intentions, anything can be accomplished. Just please, don't "play with time", act as if we've run out of time! You have to speak [to the leaders, the public, the terrorists] as much as you can, and compromise whenever possible. Our lives (the hostages on both sides) are in your hands, and we are counting on you. I've heard very little about how you are doing, however one day, everything will be different.
Tammy, I want to tell you, I now fully understand the subject that we've often spoken of, your wanting to help prisoners (not necessarily prisoners of war) . You can try to do something for the prisoners of this organization, to help the time pass, and help them live a better life (a little food, a prayer book, anything you do is significant). You can't imagine how important such small things are to a lonely man who is far away.
I have written the most important things that I wanted to tell you. On the whole, I'm all right, and usually feel O.K. They are treating me well (I hope you do the same). Please build our (new) house, get advice from your father. Please put your all into raising our daughter( which you do wonderfully). Please guide her with the right values, she is our hope for the future! I hope to see you very soon. Just look back at the year that has passed, and you will realize that not much has been done. Please try to do more, for all our sakes. I know that it's hard, but please, convey the message that it is up to us to overcome the obstacles of hate, fear, and suspicion through compassion, love and mercy.... And then everything would change.
I pray that with G-d's help, we will be able to see each other soon, in this new year. Yom Kippur is approaching, and I will be praying together with you that G-d blesses all of us. Let's hope that He will help the leaders make the right choices. You also can help, please try! I hope that you are taking care of yourselves, and the others as well. Don't lose hope, there will be other, better, days. With all my might, I'm trying not to give up. I'm holding my breath and crossing my fingers.
Love Always, Ron